Normally, Elin Bäcklund studies to become a qualified engineer at LTH. But now, she has become IT-giant Microsoft’s ambassador for women in IT.
The IT industry still has a long way to go when it comes to gender equality, and in many professions of the future, woman representation remains low.
But a first step towards levelling that imbalance could be taken right now – aided by a student from the Faculty of Engineering at LTH. Elin Bäcklund is a student of the Engineering Physics Programme, specialising in software. And on Wednesday 16 March, she was chosen as IT-Woman of the Year.
IT giant Microsoft grants the award
In a poll conducted by the Swedish Institute of Public Opinion Research, Sifo, 70% of women think that they are not encouraged to develop their technological interests, according to IT-news provider Breakit. Therefore, IT giant Microsoft has chosen to institute an award to do precisely that.
“Maintaining competence is one of the biggest challenges for both start-ups and bigger corporations in this industry. We believe there are many advantages for the industry in promoting role models who can work for change and inspire more women to take the step into IT,” says Sara Kullgren, administrator of Developer Experience at Microsoft, in a press release.
Being granted the award as IT-woman of the year means working as an ambassador for Microsoft during a year, acting as a role model for other women who want to work in IT, with many opportunities to both network and inspire. This is something that sounds very tempting to winner Elin Bäcklund.
“Has the ability to engage”
“This award gives me courage to continue to push the envelope on important matters. Not least the question of how many women work in the technology and IT industries. As this is a starting point in my career, this feels like a huge push in the right direction, and I am extremely psyched about working with IT after university,” she says in a press release.
Elin Bäcklund is the thirteenth person becoming IT Woman of the Year and was also given a Lumia 950 phone, and a Microsoft Surface Pro 4.
Jury motivation for choosing Elin Bäcklund:
“This year’s winner has the ability to engage people for the possibilities of technology. With an incredible drive, a passion, and an ability to lead, this year’s IT Woman of the Year strives to create binary code that provides change – today and tomorrow.”
Translation: Richard Helander